DELTONA, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Volusia County sheriff’s detectives on Thursday announced the arrest in the 2016 murder of a Deltona.
The remains of 40-year-old Maria Marquez-Rivera, of Deltona, were found buried in a shallow grave near Ormond Beach in November 2016, seven weeks after her disappearance in October.
Detectives say her killer is the woman's ex-boyfriend, 49-year-old Orlando Cruz-Romero, of Puerto Rico, who is is now facing a charge of second-degree murder. He is already in federal custody in Bayamon, where he was previously sentenced to 30 months in prison on identity theft charges filed during the initial homicide investigation.
Detectives believe Cruz-Romero killed Marquez-Rivera during an altercation at her home sometime after 11:30 p.m. on Oct. 3, 2016, then cleaned up the scene, and drove to the wooded area off of Interstae 95, where he buried her in a shallow grave.
Marquez-Rivera and Cruz-Romero had a 3-year-old son who was present at the home the night of Oct. 3. Investigators say Cruz-Romero dropped him off at a relative’s house sometime before taking Marquez-Rivera’s body to the woods in Ormond Beach.